Staying Connected on the Road

Whether at work or home or somewhere in between, we are in constant need of keeping in touch with each other.   Tradition workspace has moved from the office or board room on to the road, in the air, and in our own home office.   We are bombarded with the latest and greatest communication tools daily.   We need to know our options and what makes sense.  

  • Cell phones are the defacto standard in mobile communications.   The problem with this is that there is rarely such thing as “just” a mobile phone anymore.   Most come with cameras, Internet access, text messaging, PDA, Blackberry service, games, “walkie-talkie” features, satellite access, and/or wireless access.   The phones today may cost as much as a laptop and the plans associated with all these gadgets can equal the cost of T-1 for your business.   What makes sense is to rationalize what you need.   First, and foremost, you need a good calling plan with enough minutes to cover your actual usage.   Second, it makes sense for the company to standardize on a cell company that you all agree to so that you are spending the majority of your time “in network”.   Third, weigh the gadget usefulness.  Personally, the screen is too small for me to consider the Internet access worth anything, but I like the text messaging because I don’t like holding a pager as well.
  • VoIP solutions are good way to save money, but they are also a good way to stay connect also.   The most overlooked of the VoIP solutions is that your business phone can travel with you.   When you are setting-up-shop in another city in say a hotel or some remote office, how incredibly nice, is it to take your business phone on the road with you and plug it in across some WI-FI Internet connection.   You can still have the office secretary answer the phone in the home office and transfer the phone call to you as if you were in the next room.   It’s a bit harder to lug around the bulky full office phone, but if makes for a “real” office on the road.

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